Hometown Sports
Don't Miss

Spikes advance to finals

Courtesy of the State College Spikes

STATE COLLEGE, PA – The State College Spikes are making their return to the New York-Penn League Championship Series after defeating the Hudson Valley Renegades in comeback fashion, 2-1, in the deciding third game of the NYPL Semifinal Series at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park on Friday night.

The Spikes will face a familiar foe in the best-of-three championship series, as the Tri-City ValleyCats will be the opponent. State College and Tri-City met in the 2013 NYPL Championship Series, which the ValleyCats won in three games.

The championship series will begin on Sunday night, when the Spikes host the ValleyCats at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park with a 6:05 p.m. start time. Tri-City will then host Game 2 on Monday night at 7 p.m., as well as Game 3, if necessary, on Tuesday night at 7 p.m. Tickets for Game 1 are now available at the Spikes Box Office and online at StateCollegeSpikes.com.

State College needed to come back late to capture the series against Hudson Valley, taking advantage of multiple mistakes to plate both of their runs in the eighth inning. Darren Seferina led off the frame with a single, then moved to third on Danny Diekroeger’s bunt single and an error. Nick Thompson scored Seferina with the tying run on an infield single, with another error putting Diekroeger at third.

Three batters later, Robelys Reyes brought in the eventual game-winning run with an RBI groundout to score Thompson.

The Spikes stayed in the game thanks to an outstanding start from right-hander Fernando Baez. Baez tied a State College single-game record with 10 strikeouts over 5 1/3 innings and allowed just one unearned run on four hits and a walk.

Hudson Valley’s lone run scored in the first inning when Braxton Lee led off the game with a single, then scored on a combination of a wild pitch and two errors on the same play. The Spikes committed four errors in the game, but allowed no more runs.

Nick Lomascolo (1-0) got the win in relief with a one-hit eighth inning after Josh Lucas had given up one hits and struck out one batter over 1 2/3 innings. Kyle Grana (1) pitched a perfect ninth inning to earn the save, and retired Hunter Lockwood with the second of his two strikeouts to send the Spikes to the NYPL Championship Series.

Thompson went 2-for-4 with a double at the plate for State College.

Renegades reliever Mike Franco (0-1) took the loss after being charged with both Spikes runs over an inning-plus on the mound. Franco allowed a total of three hits and two walks while striking out two.

Hudson Valley starter Chris Pike tossed six scoreless innings, allowing three hits, a walk and a hit batsman. Pike also struck out four batters in the effort.

The Spikes and ValleyCats have not yet announced starters for Sunday’s NYPL Championship Series opener.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *